If you are a soccer player, then you are well aware that the sport is hard on your feet. Not only do you spend hours every week running, but you also kick a ball, twist in the grass a lot, and jump up and down. Over time, this activity can add up and cause damage, but the secret to a long career is learning to recognize injuries and ailments in their early stages — and then seek treatment. Here are some early signs that you, as a soccer player, need to see a podiatrist.
1. You have ingrown toenails.
Ingrown toenails are pretty common in soccer players. The constant downward pressure of your shoes on your toes combined with the increased pressure on your toes when you kick can cause your toenails to protrude into your skin over time. Soccer players often ignore ingrown toenails if they are not overly painful, but if you wait until they cause you pain, the only effective solution might be surgery. If you contact a podiatrist now, they can trim your nails in a way that will discourage them from continuing to grow into your skin.
2. The top of your foot hurts after practice.
Having a sore foot every once in a while is not a big deal, but if the top of your foot has consistently been sore after practices and games, this could be a sign of a metatarsal stress fracture. These are basically overuse fractures that can occur in the bones that form the top of your foot. They won't heal until you take some time off, so you should really visit a podiatrist for diagnosis rather than continuing to play through the pain.
3. Your arch hurts when you get up in the morning.
Does your arch feel really stiff, tight, and sore when you first get up in the morning? Those first steps may be excruciating. Throughout the day, the tension eases up and you can work out without too much pain, but the pain then reappears in the morning. This is a sign of plantar fasciitis, a condition in which the connective tissues in the sole of your foot become inflamed. It's common in anyone who runs a lot, soccer players included. Your podiatrist can recommend all sorts of treatments, from splints to cortisone injections, so it's worth a visit.
If you are a soccer player with any of the issues discussed above, it's time to seek care. There's no reason to suffer when a podiatrist can diagnose and treat you.
To learn more, visit a website like http://www.elmhurstpodiatry.com.